Rail plans move ahead
A rail link between Avondale, Onehunga, and Auckland airport has been endorsed by city authorities.
But catching a train to the airport will still be decades away.
The heavy rail route has the thumbs up from Auckland city and regional councils.
It’s also the option preferred by transport infrastructure agency the Auckland Regional Transport Authority.
Identifying the route is part of ARTA’s long-term planning for a southwest transit corridor.
The route would follow State Highway 20 from Avondale to Onehunga, cross the harbour, then follow State Highway 20A to the airport.
A rail link between Puhinui station and the airport, and the reopening branch line between Onehunga and Penrose would complete the loop.
Auckland City Council transport committee chairman Ken Baguley says the circular route would best serve the city, and could be developed in stages.
But Mr Baguley says any development is likely to be a long way off.
“And it’s certainly not a cheap option,” he says.
A rough estimate in 2007 figures puts construction costs for the 29km network at $2178 million, and land costs at $89m.
The first stage of the scoping project established that provision should be made for rail to cross the Manukau Harbour underneath the new bridge being constructed.
The motorway is also to be shifted east between the bridge and Walmsley Rd to allow for a future rail corridor.
But no provision has been made for a rail corridor through Onehunga, where State Highway 20 is soon to be widened.